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Campaign Nonviolence National Conference Call-Sept.2015

Posted by Ryan Hall

On September 17th, we held our latest national conference call to prepare and organize for the Campaign Nonviolence Week of Actions September 20-27 and to share news about this growing movement.  Below you will find the notes from the Thursday call.

Campaign Nonviolence National Organizing Conference Call
September 17, 2015, 5pm Pacific/ 8pm Eastern (60 minutes)

Listen to the call here.

Facilitator: Ryan Hall
Maestro coordinator: Ryan Hall
Notetaker: Ryan Hall


  • Welcome (Ryan Hall)
  • Centering (Veronica Pelicaric)
    • Great ideas, it has been said, come into the world as gently as doves. Perhaps, then, if we listen attentively, we shall hear amid the uproar of empires and nations a faint flutter of wings, a gentle stirring of life and hope.  – Albert Camus
  • Roll Call (Ryan Hall): Ryan read the current list of folks on the call.

CNV Updates:

  • CNV Action Updates (Ken Butigan)
    • Ken highlighted some of the many actions taking place around the nation.  We’ve got at least 325 actions happening now! Wilmington, DE will march for a culture of peace and against gun violence, People in Las Vegas will march against drone warfare, Oklahoma city will gather to talk with the Police chief about racism, in Tucson people will gather to protest at the weapons designer Raytheon, San Franciso people will sing in the subway station for peace, in Bangor Maine 40 different organizations will march for peace throughout the city, in Washington DC people will gather at the White House to call for a new culture of nonviolence. In Great Falls people will oppose fracking, in Ashland, OR they will hold a Peace Commission, in Salt Lake City they hold a rally against nuclear weapons, in Houston activists will hold peace and justice signs over freeway  overpasses.
    • Other cities have weeklong events like Memphis,TN, Raleigh, NC, Little Rock, AR, Boise, ID
  • Social Media during the Actions (Rivera Sun)  
    • Rivera said that we really have two demonstrations, one on the ground and one online!  In small towns, even if we reach a small number of people, we reach many more online.  
    • Rivera said this week of actions is the time to really lift up the power of nonviolence.  She said we can break through despair about the current state of the world by taking action.  She said that when you share what you did during your action it really inspires people.  
    • Rivera encouraged people to use these hashtags on twitter during the week of actions:  #CNV, #nonviolence, #peaceday
  • CNV Action Press Work and 2016 Pitch on Next Year’s Action Week Sept 18-25, 2016 (John Dear)
    • John recently posted an article on the Week of Action, he also turned it into a Press Release which was posted on the Pace e Bene homepage.  You can also download John’s National Press Release here. If you’d like a local press release for your action, download that here.
    • John encouraged everyone to send the press release to their local media.  If you get anything in the media be sure to let us know so we can share it with others.   We want people to see the scale of these events nationally.  
    • John also encouraged people to let all those involved in actions this year to put next year’s actions week on their calendar, Sept 18-25.  
    • John suggested that people could also keep watching Jim Lawsons talk at the CNV Conference in Santa Fe which can be found on our YouTube Channel.  
  • Submit your POST Action details after the event (Ryan Hall)

Large Group Discussion:
Action plans and ideas from organizers across the nation for Campaign Nonviolence Week Sept 20-27, 2015

  • Dennis in New Hampshire:  He will be holding a vigil at the beach and you’ll be able to see it in front of a live webcam as well.  See his action here.
  • Linda in Massachusetts:  They will be holding an interfaith vigil sharing text or prayers.  She is looking for some kind of lament or litany on forgiveness about ending war, poverty or the climate crisis.  A few people made suggestions about connecting with Pax Christi and John Dear suggested the Pace e Bene vow of Nonviolence would be a good text to use. He also suggested his Prayer for a Nonviolent Life that was published in his book The Nonviolent Life.  
  • Agnes in South Carolina:  Agnes will be holding a prayer service for peace. She also thanked Pace e Bene for our book Franciscan Nonviolence and was grateful for our resources.
  • Joy in Wisconsin: There are many events happening in Wisconsin.  They will hold a vigil at Volk Field where they train pilots to operate drones, they will hold a peace vigil at the capitol building, they are also exhibiting drone quilts in the capitol rotunda, they will also be reading names of victims of drone warfare.  She is also involved in the action in DC where the National Campaign for Nonviolent Resistance will hold an action called Sowing the Seeds of Hope from Congress to the White House.  They will occupy Paul Ryan’s office trying to talk to people in his office about their concerns on war poverty and the climate.  They will go to the white house afterwards with speakers including John Dear, Kathy Kelly, Medea Benjamin David Swanson.  They will call on the President to make policy changes and some will risk arrest.  
  • Wally in Hawaii:  Wally said he enjoys the conference calls because he feels connected to the movement especially being out in the middle of the Pacific.  They will be holding a peace concert, a peace vigil in Hilo, and a workshop on movement history.  Wally said that next year they are hoping to do something about the huge military presence in Hawaii.
  • Sue in North Carolina:  They have a whole week of events in Raleigh starting with a peace festival.  Many groups will be involved including many different faith traditions.  They have three workshops as well, one on the moral injury of war,  alternative to violence project, finally one on writing letters to the editors.  They will also have music and events for children.  They let the mayor and the city council know about their plans as well.  They have a peacemaker award dinner, a workshop on anti-racism as well as prayers for peace.  They also already have a meeting set for October to plan for 2016!
  • Rivera in New Mexico: They have a lot of different events happening in Taos.  She wanted to mention a few other folks though including Jake Donaldson in California who brought his one week old last year during the actions, her very first action!.  The other person she mentioned is Jimmy Betts with Beyond Extreme Energy who is on an 18 day fast to stop renewing any new fossil fuel infrastructure permits.
  • Gloria in Michigan:  They have 30 days of peace including a peace concert, a harvest parade, various talks and discussions on poverty, films, prayer vigils, walks for peace.
  • Catz in Wisconsin:  She recently moved from the Boston area back to the Madison area and has noticed quite a bit of racism and racial tension there. Catz said she will hold a Create-In in a park nearby. People can bring some kind of lap project.  She isn’t sure how many people will show up and thought she might be the only one, but she’s going to to do her best.  
  • Jerry in Texas:  They are doing a lot of different events in Houston.  They are planning an action where they hold a sign on a freeway overpass for peace and justice.  They are doing a number of solidary events including one with Food not Bombs to pass out food to the homeless where they are trying to end a ban on feeding the homeless.  They are also gathering for artistic resistance to write cards and letters to mail to activists who’ve been in prison for the civil resistance.  They’re also working on a march on Saturday.
  • Monica in Tennessee: They have a week of actions planned in Memphis including an interfaith vigil at the civil rights museum, lunch discussions on prison reform and racial reconciliation, a film on gun violence, a day of service delivering meals to the poor, they will also participate in a block party to empower one of the poorest zip codes in the country.  

Final Comments:

  • Ken Butigan let people know that we are going to launch something called the Nonviolent Cities project soon. It will ask people to figure out how their city could be a nonviolent city.  We will also be launching the 1000 trainings project to encourage people to hold nonviolence trainings.  
  • Ryan Hall reminded people to send us your stories, photos and news articles after your action.  Click here to submit your POST action details.  We will also hold a conference call in October to celebrate all that happened during the week of actions.  We will post the date soon.

Closing–Campaign Nonviolence Pledge (Veronica)

Sign the pledge if you haven’t done so yet.

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